A relatively new treatment is available for a limited time to Israelis suffering from chronic neck, back and other bodily pains.

Sidika Ashauer, a certified performer of Atlas PROfilax, is based in Holon and offering this treatment until the end of October.

Ashauer, who lives in Australia but has worked with clients all over the country, is offering her services in Israel after a successful visit several months ago, during which she treated dozens of people suffering from symptoms related to atlas misalignment.

She also offers a wide range of other therapeutic services, such as Japanese acupuncture, remedial massage, trauma resolution and dance therapy.

The concept is simple: The first cervical vertebra, commonly known as the atlas because of the way it cradles the skull and connects it to the spine, is responsible for our ability to nod and rotate our heads.

The atlas is supposed to be held in place by two styloids on either side, which grow in sometime before the age of one.

However, Ashauer explained, for several reasons, most people suffer a misaligned atlas – some people from the doctor grabbing their heads as they are born, others from traumatic injuries. When the atlas is misaligned, it is twisted and dropped on one side, like a see-saw, she said.

The weight of the head, subject now to gravity, is crooked, causing compression and structural pain primarily in the neck and back. The twist in the atlas runs through the entire body, often causing one leg to be shorter than the other and throwing off pelvic rotation, she explained.

When the atlas’s alignment is corrected, so is the weight of the head, which Ashauer said allows the patient to feel lightness and more length of the spine.

“The effect of the treatment can be immediate,” she said, and it is often felt as more muscular freedom in the neck. Over the weeks and months following the treatment, success can manifest itself in many ways – sufferers of chronic pain, herniated discs, fibromyalgia, migraines, neck pain, and even insomnia, depression and allergies can see a tapering of symptoms.

Ashauer described the Atlas PROfilax treatment as “a unique and revolutionary method that provides pain relief and healing on many levels – body, mind and spirit.”

The treatment of a misaligned atlas was revolutionized by René-Claudius Schumperli, who suffered a neck injury as a child and searched for relief for years, said Ashauer. Between 1993 and 1996, Schumperli worked on perfecting the current procedure – a one-time treatment that is said to return the atlas vertebra to its correct position.

The treatment itself is quick and minimally invasive. First, Ashauer uses gentle manipulation of the neck to assess the degree of misalignment. Then, the patient reclines and Ashauer checks the severity of pelvic rotation, and the length of the patient’s legs. Finally, she uses something like an electronic stylus with a pulsating knob to manipulate the misaligned atlas into its correct place, circling the area with the stylus several times and applying pressure.

She has treated hundreds of patients over the past five years, noticing that many of them experience relief of not only physical symptoms, but mental and emotional symptoms as well.

“The compression that the atlas can cause on your spine is like a kink in your hose,” Ashauer said. “You don’t have the optimum flow, and if it is severe enough, it can cause things like learning disabilities, fatigue and depression.”

She recalled several specific cases in which she had treated students who were in the bottom half of their classes. Some six months after treatment, they were already performing better academically.

In other cases, she said, children she had treated had grown out of scoliosis. The reason for the shift in mental and emotional health may be due to the shift in the spine as well, which in turn allows the connection between the brain and rest of the body to flow more openly.

“The response [in Israel] has been amazing,” she said. “People may initially be anxious or fearful, having experienced other unsuccessful treatment or from the stress of living in constant pain.”

She said potential clients can come, meet with her free of charge and then decide if they want to continue with the treatment.

“To be able to help anybody is what I enjoy,” she said. “It’s not work!”

If interested in Atlas PROfilax by Sidika Ashauer while in Israel, contact her at 052-263-6447. In Australia, she can be reached at 04-2780-5405. Visit her website for more information at www.pain-free-me.com.

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